We acknowledge that we live and work on the traditional territory of the Neutral, Anishinaabeg and Haudenosaunee peoples. The University of Waterloo is situated on the Haldimand Tract, the land promised to the Six Nations that includes six miles on each side of the Grand River.
Put 25 entrepreneurs in one room for a few hours, and you’re bound to learn something.
That’s exactly what happened at the Enterprise Co-op (E Co-op) End of Term presentations held on Monday December 7, 2015. E Co-op students gathered to reflect on four months of venture-building and share what they learned for the benefit of their peers.
Here are a few of the takeaways from the term:
Be patient, results take time.
Entrepreneurs are always trying to hustle more, grow faster, and hurry to the next milestone. However, relationships take time to develop, and quality work takes time to create. Entrepreneurs need to invest the time and effort to deliver great products and services to their customers.
The need for entrepreneurs to cultivate patience was one of the takeaways that Medea Rasheed (3B Urban Planning) shared from her experience building CreatewithMedea, a business dedicated to helping individuals explore creative expression through acrylic painting and calligraphy workshops.
Don't know something? Teach yourself!
Marc-Andre Bouchard (3A Mechatronics Engineering) is the founder of Arkana Arts, a consulting service that provides business support for artists. Over the course of the term, he dedicated himself to learning new skills, from digital marketing to HTML/CSS.
His message to fellow students: self-learning is a powerful way for entrepreneurs to fill the gaps in their capabilities and develop skills for both their business and personal development.
Back-up plans are good.
Caleb Voskamp (2B Arts and Business) ran into a few pitfalls midway through the term as he worked on his venture, RePork, an integrated hog data collection system for pig farmers. His phone and his truck both broke in the same week, leaving him stranded and disconnected.
He adjusted to this delay by turning his focus to researching trends in the pork industry while he dealt with the unforeseen setbacks. Thanks to plan B, he was still able to advance his business goals even while temporarily sidelined.
You can’t sprint forever.
Starting a business is more of an ultra-marathon than a 100-metre dash.
In order to stay energized for the long haul, especially as a single founder, Timothy Souza (2B Arts and Business) stressed the necessity of surrounding yourself with a supportive group of "great human beings." This has been crucial for him while he builds his startup, LiveLocal, a concierge platform that connects travellers to local experts in every city.
Congratulations to all Enterprise Co-op students for your accomplishments this term!